Culture Renews Cities

Posted on Nov 11, 2012 In Latest Updates Research Reports

The Renew Hamilton Project hosted the second installment of Conversations with Christopher Hume and Guests at Liuna Station on October 30, 2012.

The purpose of the series is to explore how global next practices in urban renewal can be implemented in Hamilton.

The October 30 event centred on the theme Rethinking Cultural Destinations.

Our intent was to help further a local connection between cultural destinations (iconic and grassroots) and urban renewal.

The evening’s panelists were Bruce Kuwabara, KPMB Architects; Tim Jones, Artscape; Udo Schliemann, Entro | G+A; and Alice Sabourin, City of Hamilton.

Louise Dompierre, chair of the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce and president and CEO of the Art Gallery of Hamilton, was our Master of Ceremonies.  The Hamilton/Burlington Society of Architects also played a leadership role in the event.

Below is a summary of the key discussion points from the event that have a direct bearing on culture and urban renewal in our community.

LISTEN NOW Christopher’s Closing Remarks on October 30

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Rethinking Cultural Destinations: Design Principles That Drive Renewal

Collective Leadership: Urban renewal in general, and downtown revitalization through creative placemaking in particular, require shared leadership across all sectors of the community.  Cultural leaders must engage other leaders to develop relevant – and sustainable – cultural destinations.

Embrace Change: Local cultural destinations must continually adapt to meet new and emerging challenges and opportunities, including evolving audience expectations, the need for innovative funding models, and advanced technologies.

Cultural Policies and Plans: Advance community-wide cultural policies and plans that are inclusive and reflective of local conditions and aspirations – i.e., the Love Your City initiative in Hamilton.

Global-Local: Balance global design thinking and operating standards with local assets to create cultural destinations that can accommodate international tours and exhibits while offering a platform for local expression.

Expanded Bottom Line: Promote culture as the fourth pillar of sustainable development along with the economy, social well-being and the environment.

Creative Placemaking: Advance community renewal through the practice of creative placemaking – art, culture and creativity drive change, growth and transformation in cities.

Stakeholder Engagement:  Engage all stakeholders, including local developers and the arts community, to understand and address shared needs and interests – work at the intersection of the economy, environment, society and culture as better outcomes happen through working together.

Facilitation: Utilize a connector organization to facilitate collaboration among key stakeholders central to creative placemaking – i.e., CoBALT Connects in Hamilton.

Advance At All Levels: Work to advance iconic cultural destinations and grassroots cultural destinations simultaneously as they are mutually reinforcing.

Flexible Spaces Connected to the Community: Design cultural destinations that can be easily modified to accommodate different uses, including platforms for local groups and organizations.

Education and Training: Form partnerships with local education and training institutions to create innovative programming, build audience and develop the next generation cultural leaders.

Demand Excellence: Push for design and operational excellence in all cultural destinations.